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Venezuela-British Guiana boundary arbitration. Digest of evidence arranged according to subjects online

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life, and useful for the help of tlic Spaniards, who may establish any trade there.

Same, p. ^2.


of; expeditions to the interior, and ESTABLISHMENT

1771. Commandant of Guiana.

The . . . commanding officer shall . . . make friends with all those
nations, especially with the Macusi and Arecunas, presenting the Indians with
such charms and amulets as they esteem, especially the Chiefs ... in
order to encourage them all to submit voluntarily to the dominion of the King,
our Master, in whose name the said officer shall formally take possession of all
that territory with as much solemnity as circumstances may permit ; demanding
an oath of fidelity from the Indians . . . offering them help and protection in
the King's name, promising to presence their lands and goods as those of faith-
ful subjects, and to defend them from their enemies that they may . . . en-
joy the many other advantages of those who subject themselves to the just and
gentle dominion of our Lord the King.

On the River Parlme, near the place called Cachibe, before reaching the
mouth of the'Abaieraruru, the said officer shall cause a smnll for.t to be built
in some narrow pass or advantageous place, that the guns of the said fort may
close the passage of the river to our enemies. It would also be of great conveni-
ence to foniul a few villaa^es of loyal Indians close to the fort for the better de-
fence and subsistence of the garrison of that important Post.

At El Dorado itself, or some site in the immediate vicinity best fitted to close
the entrance of Lake Parime, ... a strouarhold shall be built . . .
and several settlements of friendly Indians shall be founded in the neighbor-
hood . . . and all things necessary for the better establishment and defence
of the Spaniards on that frontier. B. C, IV, gS.

Should any European foreigners be found in those parts outside the Colonies
allowed them, as . . . the Dutch on the coast of Surinam, Berbice, Esse-
quibo, of the Atlantic Ocean, his Majesty's order shall be intimated to them that
they quit those his Royal dominions forthwith, and if, after the first remonstrances,
they do not withdraw to the former settlements allowed them, abandoning the
territory they have usurped, they shall be driven out by force of arms.

Same, p. gg.

1772. Commandant of Guiana.

The fate of the expedition under Martinez was not so bad, but neither was it
successful. Same, p. 106.

In these sad straits Don Nicolas Martinez resolved to retire, with all his ex-
pedition, ... to this capital. ... As I have informed your Excel-
lency, it is necessary for us to take possession of these lands to restrain
the Portuguese, French and Dutch. . . . For this reason I have sent a
Commanding Officer to the Parava with power and orders to make settlements
of the Arinagoto Indians, who are found half way down this river, and the
Ipurucocos, whom Martinez found in the cocao plantation of Paravamusi, that
these two settlements may facilitate the passage of our expedition to Parime.

Same, p. loy.

1772. Fray Felix de Villanueva.

The Reverend Father Benito de la Garriga with Father Thomas de Mataro
are on an exploration of the Parime. ... a great number of wild Indians
came out upon them with firearms. . . . Some Caribs from our Missions.



who were also in the fight, have arrived and they say that some of our band
are killed, but they are unable to give further particulars. V. C, II, 4oS'4og.

1773. Commandant of Guayana.

The Orinoco was nearly deserted, or rather dominated by the savage Caribs,
up till about 1755, when the Royal Boundary Expedition arrived, which was com-
manded by Commodore Don Joseph de Iturriaga. He tamed the pride of the In-
dians, and subdued and handed over many of them to the missionaries, founded,
at the expense of the Royal Treasury, the two Spanish settlements of Ciudad Real
and Real Corona on the Lower Orinoco, and had the country penetrated by the
Upper Orinoco and Casiquiari for 300 leag'ues, all desert land as far as Rio
Ne^ro, where he erected a military post and a fort on the Portuguese frontier.
In order better to check the advance of the Portuguese conquests he bronglit
under the dominion of the King and into the bosom of Hol\» Church the tribes
of Indians ruling in that country. . . . The Commander founded with
these Indians the tliree villages of San Joseph de Maypures, at the entry of the
Upper Orinoco valley, and San Carlos and San Phelipe in Rio Negro.

B. C.,IV, 114.

To occupy the important frontier of the Parime, in the far interior of this
province, I have despatched a detachment of sixty men, under Lieutenant Don
Vincente Diez de la Fuente, who is at present at the head-waters of the River
Paragua, 300 leagues from this capital, engaged in founding: the city of Guirior,
with Spanish families I have sent from here, and various other Indian villages that
are being reduced in the same direction, and they are stations necessary for our
establishment, and for the security of the dominions of the King in those parts.

Same, p. iiS.

1774. Don Manuel Centurion.

I afterwards fitted out a second expedition under the command of a Lieutenant
of Infantry, Don Vincente Diez de la Fuente, (Martinez being dead), . . , to the
number of 125 men. They were to enter the river Caroni and follow it . . .
till they reached New Barceloneta . . . and then to follow the rivers Parava,
Paravamuxi, Anocapora, Muniquiare, and Curaricara, till they flow into Lake
Parime, . . . [At] the mouth of the Lesser Coroni in the Parava, where
they founded the village of San Joseph with 150 Indians whom they subjected;
. . . the advance party penetrated into the interior by means of this river and
the Abarauru, Amau, and Amoine, and arrived within so short a distance
of Lake Parime that . . . two days' land journey would bring them to it.
. . . But they were forced to retreat, being attacked by a large body of
Indians, . . . and ... he was obliged to return to the body of
the expedition . . . using as bases the settlements of San Juan Baptista,
which he had founded in the mouth of Abarauru, at the end of Parime, that of
Santa Barbara in the latter, between the mouths of Abarauru and Curaricara,
that of Santa Rosa, in the mouth of the latter in Parime itself, that of Adamura
on the land which is between Anocopora and Maniquare, that of San Salvador on
the source of the Parava, and that of San Vincente (now called " Ciudad de
Guirior") in the Paravamuxi. . . . These settlements . . . have . . .
about 150 souls in each, and in Ciudad de Guirior . . . chiefly consisting
of Spanish families, the population may be 200. Same, pp. 126-12J.


of; expeditions to the interior, and ESTABLISHMENT

1776. Don Manuel Centurion.

The Commanding Officer of the Royal expedition of the Parime, . . .
Fuente, [having informed me of the arrest of certain Spaniards by Portuguese]
. . . I ordered the Captain . . . Barreto ... to present himself to
the Portuguese Governor of Varzelos in Rio Negro. . . . to . . . com-
plain bitterly of such an insult, and demand back the posts, the usurped terri-
tory, and the imprisoned troops. B- C., IV, i6j.

The second exploration . . . by . . . Lopez . . . took the
same course as the first, also examining the Lake Parime and El Dorado, of
which it took possession ... but ... on its return it was surprised and
arrested by a strong Portuguese detachment, which had unduly established and
fortified itself on the mouth of the said River Mao. Same, pp. 163-164.

1777. Don Manuel Antonio Flores.

In pursuance of this Royal mandate I gave the order, which appears by the
enclosed copy to the Commandant of Guayana, advising him that the places where
our people were arrested by the Portuguese . . . are exactly those which
may first prevent the encroachment of the French. V. C, III, 3S4.

1777. Francisco Iturrate.

The enclosed copy of royal order . . . will inform you of what France
proposes for the exploitation and cultivation of French Guiana; in it . . . the
Viceroy is instructed to personally inform himself as to tlie lands which it is ad-
visable for us to occupy in order to prevent the encroachments which they
have in mind ; and as they are exactly . . . those in which the Portuguese
insulted us by arresting our people ... if our settlements advance toward
French Guayana they will prevent those which that nation proposes to extend
into the interior of the country. . . . take every precaution to frustrate
the designs of tlie French. Same, pp. 3S4-3S5.

1779. Don Jose de Abalos.

They [Spanish] are to advance their occupation on tlie eastern side as
much as they possibly can, until they reach French Guiena, and are likewise
to extend themselves as much as they can on the soutli until they reacli the
frontier of the Crown of Portugal.

The design of these measures is not merely to establish and secure pos-
session of what belongs to the Crown of Spain in the Province of Guayana,
but chiefly to settle those extensive countries, in order to secure thereby the
benefits of the Monarchy, . . . and . . . the conversion of those
numerous heathens and the propagation of the Holy Gospel. It would be
very desirable that the said occupation of lands and their settlement should
be begun in the rear of the Dutch settlements, close to French Guiena, and
particularly to the Rivers called Oyapoco and Aprovak. B. C, IV, 19 j.

1782. Fray Benito de la Garriga.

With the purpose of preventing the French of Surinam from approaching I
placed Indians in Cura ; because no progress can be made toward the South
unless there should be some settlements there. V. C.-C, III, QQ-



1779. Governor of Guayana.

I am instructed, as regards the eastern section of the territory, to place iu
your charge . . . the duty of effecting the occupation of the respective
territories under its jurisdiction, . . . and have also appointed Don Jose
Felipe de luciarte to aid your Honor in this Commission. . . . Should it
not be possible for you to go in person, the aforesaid Inciartewill go.

V. C.-C, ///, pj.

It is necessary that you issue the proper authority to . . . Inciarte so that
he may enter and exercise over all that territory ... the proper and
necessary jurisdiction. The most urgent thing at present is to find families to go
and establish themselves in the new lands to be discovered and inhabited. . . .
I will bend all my energies towards obtaining from other places as many settlers
as possible ... for their final settlement there. Same, p. g6.

1779. Don Jose de Abalos.

The said Province of Guayana . . . begins, on its eastern side, to
windward of the outflow of the River Orinoco into the sea on the border of the
Dutch Colony of Essequibo ; it shall be one of the first cares ... in mak-
ing the new settlement to go as near as possible to the aforesaid Colony
. . . for founding the first settlement, B. C, IV, 194-195-

1779. Director-General in Essequibo.

A number of eighty, both Spaniards and mulattos, had been in the Kiver
Bouweron for some days without, however, committing any molestation, yet the
Indians report that they have said they will come again in about three months,
and then build a fortress there. Savic, p. 207.

1779. Don Jose de Abalos.

Inciarte. . . . proceeded to make the first survey of the country. . . .
He . . . approached the settlements of the Dutch in Essequibo and their
immediate vicinity, to witliin the distance of 14 leagues. Same, p. 210.

1779. Don Jose Felipe de Inciarte.

In fulfilment of the commission you were pleased to entrust to me for the
populating of the eastern part of the lower Orinoco, ... I commenced the
exploration of the country. V. C, II, 434.

1780. Royal Order to the Governor of Guiana.

The King has been informed of the arrival . . . of . . . luciarte,
commissioned ... to carry out, under your orders, the occupation of lands
and new towns to be built in the eastern portion of said Province in accordance
with the instructions . . . which has been approved by his Majesty, together
with your Honor's determination to wait until the proper time to undertake the
exploration of the lands . . . and to select the most appropriate site for the
foundati(»n of tlic first town, wliicli will serve as capital for the others
wliich sliail be founded in time. V- C.-C, III, gS.



1780. King of Spain.

Iiiciarte is to return . . . for the purpose of occupying and settling
tlie places specified in his annexed Report . . . and making t^e provis-
ional fortification which he considered needful, ejecting- the Dutch from the Post
or advance guard-house which they have built on the road of the River Moruca.

B. C.,JV,2I2.

1 78 1. Military Commandant in Essequibo.

Spaniards with boats have again been seen in the River Pomeroon.

Same, p. 21S.



i[l778.j Don Jose Felipe de Inciarte.

There is much ground for thinking not only of occupying the posts . . .
which can check in that quarter the progress of the French, but also to form
some new villages, taking settlers from without, following the example of what
France is going to do, without which it would be very natural that what took
place in San Domingo should take place in Guayana, that they should go on ad-
vancing inward and building houses, in order later to allege undisturbed pos-
session because the usurpation was not protested against in time, a thing
which cannot fail to happen if we do not establish some settlements close to the
French possessions. V' C., Ill, jSg.

1779. Venezuelan Case.

Inciarte meanwhile reported his results, . . . the King of Spain . . . com-
missioned him to proceed at once with the expulsion of the Dutch from Moruca
and the erection of the projected Spanish establishments on that river and on
the Pomeroon, ... All preparations were made for the execution of the
project, and the granting of lands actually begun. The French Revolution de-
layed its progress, but it was never abandoned. With a view to its better accom-
plishment Inciarte was himself made Governor of Guiana. . . . And though,
owing to the continuance of the revolutionary wars, its execution was not actually
pushed further, the project was never given up, and was receiving the attention of
the Spanish Government to the very end of its control of these South American
colonies and to the very eve of the Dutch cession of Essequibo to Great Britain.

V. C, 146-147-
1779. Don Jose Felipe de Inciarte.

At a quarter of a league before reaching the aforesaid Dutch [Moruca] post
the rivulet forms a small bay . . . and this bay could serve as a port.

It would be convenient in my opinion to found a town close to this bay or
port, as besides the advantages offered by the produce of the land, the communi-
cation which the Dutch have with the Orinoco by means of the inside branches
could be prevented.

The passage of the river Moruca could easily be prevented by erecting a fort
with four or six guns in the aforesaid small bay.

As for protecting the town against the attacks of the Dutch or any other
enemy, this can be obtained by erecting a fort on one of the small heights.

V. C, II, 435-43(>-


FRONTERA- (Continued).

1779. Don Jose Felipe de Inciarte.

From the Tapacuma, following the Bauruma as far as Branch Visorun, the
distance is of about five and one half leagues. . . . Within the five and one
half leagues there are two hills.

The second hill which is on the left going up the Bauruma, is at about one
and one half leagues from this branch ; ... it seems to me that the first
town which it is intended to found under the name of San Cai'los (le la Frou-
tera should lie on this spot, as being distant from Essequibo by land only twelve
or thirteen leagues, it commands, on account of its advantageous position, not
only the surrounding lands but also the aforesaid branch Bauruma.

V. c, II, 437.

Besides the advantages which may be expected from founding a town upon
the hill of Bauruma, the distance from it to Essequibo being only as I have said
before from twelve to thirteen leagues, we can reach the shores of the river
Essequibo by means of four or Ave towns ; and this being obtained, the Dutch
are deprived of all communication, not only with the various indian tribes south
of the Essequibo and all the branches of the Orinoco, but also with the whole
of the Parime. Same, p. 4j8.

1779. Don Jose de Abalos.

The Commissioners are charged that, if they meet with the above-mentioned
obstacles against penetrating and establishing themselves, not only in the fur-
thest limits of the eastern portion of the province, but even much nearer, they
may in such a case select for a first settlement the most suitable site in the
country which lies between the moutlis of the Orinoco and the Colony of Esse-
quibo. B. C, IV, ig6.

In order to commence the great work of occupation of the said lands, and the
foundation of settlements, it is necessary to bring some families from , . ,
the Province of Guayana itself . . . taking them for the said purpose to the
place in which the first village is to be founded . . . the land should be sur-
veyed, . . . and a selection made of the spot . . . most suitable ; and
. . . plantations of plantains and other fruits be made for the support of the
new inhabitants. . . . When this has been done the settlers may be trans-
ferred to this first village, where, when they are cnce settled, the measures for fur-
ther advance may be taken in every form.

This first village shall bear the name of San Carlos de la Frontera.

Same, p. ig8.

On account of the attacks which might be experienced from certain Corsairs,
pirates, smugglers, and other people of evil life, ... it will be desirable to
found tlie new settlement at a slight distance inland, in order that it may
be free from all risk, and that its inhabitants may live without fear ; while, with
slight labour, they will enjoy the advantages of exporting and importing what
they require by water. Sa»ie, p. igg.

The want of the Treaties of Peace for my instruction and accurate knowledge
of what has been agreed upon with tlie States-General respecting the settlements
of Surinam and Essequibo, and how far their frontiers extend, leaves me in a state



of uncertainty as to the selection of a site for the first village ; but . . . accord-
ing to Inciarte's report, the most eligible site is one situated beyond the first
place or Post of tlie Diitcli called Monica, . . . and ... I propose
to make arrangements for cstablisluug- it in that spot. B. C, IV, 210.

1779. Don Antonio de Pereda.

The Intendant of Caraccas . . . suggests that on our side the new
settlements should be founded towards the east of this province, within the
sliortest possible distance of the Dutch Colony of Essequibe. ... a

survey should be made of this territory, with a view to choosing the most con-
venient site for the foundation of the first town, which will afterwards serve as
capital to the others, to be established in due course in those parts, with the
design previously mentioned, all these new settlements to be in subordination to
this province. Same, p. 206.

1779. Court of Policy.

The said Director-General . . . received a report from the Postholder
of Marowyuo and Wacquepo that some Spaniards were stopping- in the
River Bauron [Pomeroon], . . . that the same had again departed, and
. . . that a clearing had been made upon the west corner of that river where
the old Post stood to re-erect the same, and requesting to know how further
to act with regard to the poldering thereof. Same, p. 2oy.

1780. [1812] Don Jose Olazara.

[In] 1780, His Majesty, with respect to the eastern pait of the province, re-
newed the decree that attention be given with absolute faithfulness to the foster-
ing of its settlement and agriculture. ... All these decrees are totally unexe-
cuted, and, as the general welfare of the province and the interest with which
the government should regard it . . . make it necessarj' to anticipate in time
the results threatened by the neighborhood of the foreign powers which have
shamefully entered the province, and to give thought earnestly to the remedy of
these injuries, present and past. And, for this purpose, it is urgently needed
that you immediately bring- about the execution of the said decrees in all
their parts, and of the special commission which . , . Inciarte had for
undertaking- the establishment of the new settlements, especially those of the
eastern part, . . . and which is the nearest to the frontier of Guayana, Dutch
and French. V. C, III, 421-422.

1810. Captain of Militia of Angostura.

He knows [that] . . . Inciarte . . . finds himself under commission
. . . And to all citizens who are willing to establish themselves in the said
settlements . . . His Majesty . . . offers to give lands for cultivation
and for the raising of cattle free of charge, and also lots for houses, . . . and
that at the earliest day there shall be founded forts from Old Guayana downward
as far as the limits or boundaries of the Dutch Colony, at present English, of
Essequibo, the first foundation to be begun on the river or bayou named
Bouruma [Pomeroon], on the border and territory on the side of the territory of
Essequibo, where there is an elevation or small hill, on which can be built a fort
with the name of 8au Carlos de la Froutera ; . . . that His Majesty author-



ized the removal of all the families that would willingly go from the kingdom of
Santa Fe de Bogota to the said settlements, all at the expense of his Royal
Exchequer ; and that for this purpose there had come from Spain . . . more
than two hundred families ready and willing to go to the said settlements, and
that, on account of the wars which occurred with France and thereafter with
England, their departure had constantly been prevented, but that their coming
with the Governor of the Province had been for the purpose of providing for
the said settlements ; and that when peace was restored with the British Nation,
in the year 1802, the said Inciarte . . . [said] he was now ready to enter
upon the completion of his mission . . . but that first he wanted . . .
to complete the reconnoissance of the ranges (Sierras), as he was instructed to do.

V. C, III, 417.



. [1896] James Rodway.

The Posts were established in the Essequebo from the time of its first occu-
pation ; in fact the early settlements were nothing- more or less tlian posts.
As such they were centres where bartering with the Indians of a wide area on
every side was carried on. The first Postholders were traders and very
little more. To reach new markets these posts were at great distances from
the centre of the Colony. V. C, III, jj/.

. Venezuelan Case.

The object of those early [Dutch] voyag'es to Guiana, was, in the first place
to harass the Spaniards, and, in the second place, to g'ain pi'oflt by trade and

plunder. Settlement upon Spanish soil, or the acquisition of territorial rights
was hardly thought of. V. C, 6^-66.

[In 1648] the entire Dutch colony . . . consisted of a body of two or
three dozen unmarried employes of the West India Company, housed in a fort on
a small island, and engaged in traffic with the Indians for the dyes of tlie
forest ; at the time when the treaty was signed, they were not cultivating an acre

Online LibraryRafael SeijasVenezuela-British Guiana boundary arbitration. Digest of evidence arranged according to subjects → online text (page 22 of 45)